My running story
I really got into exercise after I had my second child. The pounds were getting harder and harder to shed.
I looked to running. I couldn't afford a gym membership, but we did have a double stroller and it was meant to act as a running stroller.
My first run killed me. I couldn't believe how hard it was on me. But I was determined to not waste the running stroller.
I was running after my husband got off work, but I found that my motivation to run waned by the end of the day.
So I got a deal going with my sister-in-law who lived just down the street.
She and her kids would come over to my house three mornings a week. She'd watch all of the kids while I ran.
When I got back, I'd watch all of the kids and she'd go running.
It was the perfect setup. We kept each other motivated and this worked for a long while.
But soon, pregnancies got in the way. First she got pregnant and then I did.
I tried to stay active, but I was pregnant with twins and my activity level went down and down until I was barely able to walk.
But after the twins were born, I was determined to get back into running.
This time, there were just too many kids to do the whole babysit/run switch.
So I started a running blog called The Running Story. I think a lot when I run, so I thought it could be an outlet for that, but mostly, it kept me accountable.
I now fit in running in the early morning before my husband heads off to work.
If I think about it, early mornings are the best time to run. It's cool and quiet and most importantly, you have nowhere to be at 5:30 in the morning.
There is no job at that time, for me anyway, and no kids. It's perfect.
My sister-in-law still runs with me and helps me stay motivated.
Having a workout buddy is vital for me. It makes it more enjoyable, but you keep each other motivated.
Right now we do one short run, one long run, and one fast run each week.
A short run right now is about three or three and a half miles. A short run means we do the three miles but we try and beat our last time. And a long run is about six or seven miles.
Every time I'm able to run longer or faster, it helps motivate me to keep going, just to see how much better I can get.
Signing up for races also helps. It sets a goal for me and I train for each race.
Racing has become an addiction for me. I've never won, but that's not my goal.
My goal is to beat my last time. The sense of accomplishment that comes after a race is so worth all of the early mornings.
The biggest obstacle I've had to overcome in order to hold onto my runner status is being a mom. I'm a mother of four and that is just so exhausting, especially when two of them are twins.
But I've created a little motto for myself and it's, "Don't think, just do."
If I think of how tired I am and how much I'd rather be sleeping than running, I'll never get out the door.
If I just wake up and, like a robot, go get my shoes on, then I go and I run and I always feel great afterward.
I am currently 29 and dangerously close to turning 30. Before I became a runner, I didn't feel good about myself. Having pregnancies and childbirth distort your body doesn't help either. Before I became a runner, I didn't have anything unique about me.
Now I can say, "I'm a long-distance runner!" That feels so great to say that.
Running has definitely help shed the pounds and give me tone and definition where I've never had it before, but more importantly, it's given me a great outlook on life and I feel great!